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Connective Tissue Massage (CTM)

Updated: Oct 26, 2022

What is CTM?

CTM is an advanced massage technique that works well alongside standard techniques. It is normally used at the early stages of a treatment, to first make contact and then to gauge the amount and location of tension in the body.

Connective Tissue Massage (CTM) was developed in Germany over 90 years ago by physical therapist Elizabeth Dicke. The technique known as Bindegewebsmassage in German, which literally translates to ‘connective tissue massage’ in English, came about due to necessity as the German therapist suffered from intense lumbosacral pain and endarteritis obliterans.

During self-treatments, "she used vigorous stretching strokes on her own back to relieve the discomfort,” (Goats and Keir, 2021) and discovered the benefits of what is now known as CTM. Although it is considered a separate modality from traditional massage it has remained a valued technique that continues to gain popularity.

What to expect from CTM


Firstly, no oil is used during a treatment and the technique involves vigorous stokes that manipulate and stretch the connective tissue. These stokes can be done using either the palm of the hand or sometimes with only fingers and/or thumbs.

“Connective tissue manipulation (CTM) is a soft tissue manipulative technique which stretches connective tissue, restoring mobility at dermis/hypodermis and dermis/fascia interfaces and promoting remodelling of collagen. It is often described as a neural therapy because of its powerful reflex effects. Visible skin and connective tissue zones are stimulated to influence visceral and circulatory functions. This was demonstrated vividly by the German founder of CTM, Elizabeth Dicke, who found that pulling the tissues of her low back relieved her back pain, restored the circulation to her almost gangrenous leg, and reduced digestive problems.” (Holey, 1995).


Benefits of CTM


The potential benefits of CTM are enormous and include:


  • Pain reduction

  • Increased energy

  • Increased mobility & flexibility

  • Recovery

  • Injury prevention

  • Improved posture


For more information email infoholistichealthmatters@gmail.com or visit us at www.holistic-healthmatters.com



Bibliography

Goats, G. and Keir, K., 2021. Connective Tissue Massage. [online] Bjsm.bmj.com. Available at: <https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/bjsports/25/3/131.full.pdf> [Accessed 25 October 2021].


Holey, L., 1995. Connective Tissue Manipulation: Towards a Scientific Rationale. [online] Doi.org. Available at: <https://doi.org/10.1016/S0031-9406(05)66573-X> [Accessed 25 October 2021].



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